- Category: Politics
- Published on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 08:30
- Written by The Nation
- Hits: 2015
PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan Monday hit back at a former Minister of Finance Mallam Adamu Ciroma and some key leaders of the Northern Political Leaders Forum who asked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to stop him from contesting the presidential election.
The leaders on Friday wrote a letter to the National Chairman of the PDP, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, stating why the party should prevent the President from participating in the presidential primary.
The signatories to the September 17 letter are Adamu Ciroma, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, Alhaji Lawal Kaita, Alhaji Bello Kirfi, Amb. Yahaya Kwande and Bashir Yusuf Ibrahim.
Writing under the Concerned Members of the Peoples Democratic Party, they said since Jonathan is from the South, it is inconceivable for him to complete the eight-year slot zoned to the North.
But the President yesterday asked the National Chairman of the PDP and members of the National Working Committee (NWC) to ignore the call.
Jonathan spoke in a statement in Abuja through the Director of Media and Publicity of the Goodluck Jonathan/Namadi Sambo Presidential Campaign Organisation, Mr. Sully Abu.
He said the letter from Ciroma and his colleagues on Jonathan’s presidential aspiration was a mark of disrespect for the party.
The statement said: "The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP has already taken a decision that President Goodluck Jonathan was constitutionally qualified to contest for the 2011 presidency.
"The decision was a product of thorough deliberations and due considerations which benefited from input by the leadership of the party at the levels of the National Caucus, Board of Trustees, the NWC and the NEC."
"The respected Northerners who style themselves "Concerned PDP Members" were acting contemptuously of the capacity and wisdom of the party in resolving the zoning controversy.
"The PDP NEC resolved to maintain the zoning policy and that was a well-thought out decision to accommodate all parts of the country while not undermining the provisions of the Constitution by precluding the right of anyone to aspire for the presidency."
"The party should "simply ignore the letter by these northerners."
"Having taken a decision on the zoning issue and the propriety or otherwise by President Jonathan to run, the party should be forward looking on the conduct of the congresses and primaries at all levels of elective public office," it added.